ITO Thailand Hygiene Blog

Mar 27 2023

New era of smarter food safety

            In 2020, the USFDA created a Blueprint or guideline on food safety in the new era that will be more up to date to keep up with the rapidly evolving new era. There is also a dependence on technology, various devices, as well as new ideas that are in line with the trend for today’s world that is moving into the future. Tune in here to see what is there.

            Nowadays, the world of food industry is changing rapidly as seen in the arrival of new sources of raw materials, new production processes, and various technologies. The change in the food industry and human behavior was also expedited by stimulation such as the pandemic (Read more about the impact of the pandemic on the food industry here) and online food delivery platforms. This prompted units responsible for food safety to adjust quickly accordingly to accommodate new phenomena that occur in society with the aim of using technology to make food safety control smarter, more efficient, less complicated, and to issue instructions to deal with contamination cases more quickly, including addressing the root cause of food contamination.

4 keys to food safety in the new era

New era of smarter food safety blueprint consists of the following 4 keys:

            •Tech-enabled traceability

            This technology is used to quickly trace the information of food products to the source to promptly stop incidents of harmful food contamination in food. The USFDA aims to be traceability within “minutes” to quickly issue handling instructions for food suspected of being contaminated, such as product recalls or warnings to reduce damage, both in terms of life and health, loss of product value and consumer confidence.

            •Smarter tools and approaches for prevention and outbreak response

            In addition to suspending incidents as quickly as possible, technology-enabled prevention will be another part that plays a role in the new era of food industry. Technology will be used to help collect data into data warehouses which can be used to analyze trends, causes, or predict the chances of various dangers more accurately, and prevent food hazards before they occur.

            Efficient data collection requires data collection standards and a data collection contract to prevent food hazard, wrongful use of the private sector’s data to create a strong and reliable information network.

            Moreover, new technologies that help to collect data more efficiently, such as sensor technology that measures environmental conditions that affect food quality or safety (e.g. temperature, humidity, etc.) or specific chemicals related to food safety also plays a role in the new era of food industry (read more about food quality and safety monitoring technology here.).

            The last part is how to perform a hazard analysis accurately and efficiently when data is obtained. For this section, placing importance on related technology systems such as machine learning, artificial intelligence plays a huge role, including reporting results online and in real time as well.

            •New business models and retail modernization

            In the modern world, food consumption behaviors change more, as well as new food-related businesses. New raw materials such as protein from insects, cultured protein, various health functional substances, new production processes (e.g. encapsulation of functional substances to make them work more efficiently and light sterilization, etc.), as well as online delivery platforms and consumer behaviors are creating new food consumption conditions that must be controlled and managed to ensure that people’s food is safe. This control system must be developed rapidly to keep up with the technological changes. Educating small entrepreneurs on food safety in the modern food business model has also become more challenging.

            Monitoring tools will come into play to help make the work of auditors easier, such as smart kitchens with automatic temperature and time tracking to predict food quality of food, or various sensors, etc., including AI systems that help monitor human behaviors to reduce contamination as well (read more).

            •Food safety culture

            This last section shows that although there are many new technologies, in the end, the part that remains important in food safety is humans. Therefore, it is necessary to put priority on shifting the attitude and food safety in terms of consumer safety, the safety and welfare of food producers themselves, including educating the consumers on food preparation for themselves.



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